A Case Of Unnecessary Intervention

So, I was in this pub t’other night. We started off as a big group, but people peeled away ’till there was only the two of us, so we moved away from the tables and the sofas, towards the bar, and carried on drinking…

At some point, I turn around and I can’t see my coat. I stagger off to investigate, and it’s not there. We’re still two hours away from closing, so I have to assume someone nicked it. I shrug, what else can I do? It’s only a coat (& gloves & hat) at the end of the day, and it’s not like it’s snowing outside. I head back to the bar and tell me mate. He goes across and looks for his coat, his has gone as well, but his had his house keys in the inside pocket! And he starts panicking!!

He calls a barman over, he tries to be calm and reasonable, but he’s been drinking a wee while and he’s worried. His agitation increases, in direct response to the barman’s unhelpfulness. He asks to speak to the manager, and the same cycle is spun out again. He asks about CCTV coverage, but the manger isn’t very optimistic that it’ll show anything of any use. The situation remaining unresolved and his worries increasing, his tone gets angry. The manager is going through all the textbook anger-management responses, but he isn’t empathising and he keeps this hint of a grin on his face, which might have been his attempt to keep things friendly, but comes across to us as if he’s not taking things too seriously. The tensions keep ratcheting up…

At some point, a barmaid, who’d been talking to the barman from earlier, comes over and asks us to describe our coats, and disappears. Ten minutes later, or so it seemed, she reappeared carrying both our coats!!! We’re still another 90 minutes from closing, so we put our coats back where we’d first left them, and get another round in.

Essentially, as far as that particular establishment was concerned, it was still the middle of the evening, and there were clearly punters standing at the bar sans their winter apparel, so why the fuck didn’t they just leave the coats where they were? And why when you enquire to two separate members of staff, did they both decline to mention this habit of hiding other people’s belongings in the back office, it would seem to be the most helpful and most obvious first response for sober punters let alone those who are already more addled.

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